BHS 100K

Here is some video and pictures from the 2013 Bishop Ultramarathon. I completed the 100K in 14 hours 22 minutes.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Day 10 - Evolution Creek to Sapphire Lake


video

Waterfall at Evolution Creek
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video
A quiet, small unnamed creek.  Good water.





Sun rising on Evolution Creek

Monday, July 9th
                Yesterday, I remembered the title of a book I read a long time ago my Henry Miller.  Henry Miller was one of those American expatriates living in Paris during the 1930’s and 40’s.  Some of his novels were banned for a period from America because of their sexually explicit nature, hence my intrigue in this writer as a teen-ager.  Anyways, the book I was thinking of was titled the Air-conditioned Nightmare which was never banned.  I remember enjoying this book, though I couldn’t tell you much about it except that it had something to do with Miller returning to visit America.  I don’t think he had much good to say actually. 
Anyways, I never understood the title of the book, yet yesterday a meaning of it occurred to me, though it may have not been what the author intended.  So Mr. Miller, I apologize - it goes like this.  You see, our everyday lives have actually become these pseudo realities of air-conditioning, climate control, convenience, and comfort, where everything is super ready, and already sliced and diced for us. And since everything is so easy, we go looking for problems to make ourselves miserable – the air-conditioned nightmare.  Everyone one of our needs can literally be satiated by the flip of a switch, the turn of a lever or the push of a button.  Need to go somewhere?  You don’t have to walk all day, just get in your car and turn the key (I just push a button in my car.)  Need water?  You don’t need to carry water up from a creek, just turn that tap and there is your fresh clean water and whatever you don’t use even gets neatly swished away in the sink.  You don’t need to dig a hole for your other waste products either do you?  Want something to eat?  Look at that nice stove and all that food in the fridge - too lazy to use the stove -  microwave – still too much trouble, that’s what the autodial on your cell phone siting in your lap for Dominoes is for and they already know what your order is, don’t they?  And what’s that you say after the pizza guy has left?  It took too long, the pizza is cold, where are the bread sticks we ordered, and why did we even tip that guy?  I’ve thought of this before and it seems to me that the better people got it, the more they complain or look for problems.  When people have it tough they all get along and work together.   Remember how united we were after 911?  Domestic violence even went down across the nation by over 50%.   When everything is easy, that’s when the bickering and fighting amongst each other starts.  Think about all the times in your life when you should have had it good.  Didn’t people start whining about the smallest things?  When you are working a good place, that’s when the politics start.  Whenever, times are bad people pull together.  It’s almost like we need to have it bad to have it good. 
This all fits in with a previous theory I developed that I call the “muck level” (substitute in another four letter word that starts with “s” if you prefer.)  You see, people can only tolerate a certain level of muck (s***, again if you prefer).  Let’s say we can tolerate muck up to our necks.  Anything higher than that and things start to get intolerable and eventually if the muck keeps rising we suffocate and die.  So when this happens, we all start to pull together so we can rise above it and survive.  However, if the muck level begins to fall too much, we also feel uncomfortable. We seem to be use to a certain level of muck and actually desire it.  If the muck level falls too low, we start looking for problems so that muck level will come back up to that very comfortable state of being in muck up to our necks.  My theory says we will all eventually rise or settle to our own muck level.  Maybe, things don’t need to stay this way.  Maybe one day we can get use to a lower level of muck and maybe even walk out of it.  Oh, I guess that would be heaven where we will all get along and all love each other – every single one of us, the old and young, tall and short, fat and thin, black, white, brown and yellow, the gay, straight and in-between.
Evolution Creek

This all came to mind after hours and days of tramping in the wilderness where nothing is easy and there is no time or room for muck.  There is no time out here to look for trouble because everything is work.  If you’re hungry, you better hope you carried enough food, yet you don’t want to carry too much food because that’s a big load you got already and your back is killing you.  You always need to plan on where you are going to get water, and if you are lucky, you will find a stream or a spring and then still you are going to have to carry that water.  If not, then you are going to have to treat some water might find sitting in a pool siting somewhere even though it may not look so good.  Getting cold? – bundle up if you got enough clothes, or build a fire with the wood you are going to have to keep gathering, or keep moving and shivering like the animals do.  If you are hot, you will need more water and start looking for shade too.  Bad weather means setting up some sort of a shelter and if you got a tent with you it’s only because you have already been carrying all that extra weight all day.  Do you get the picture?  Everything out here is work.  Yet I find it a glorious work and I thrive in it.  In this work, I get reconnected with my primal self.

                I always tell myself that I am going to start hiking early, but never do.  I enjoy my morning routine and always linger till the morning sun comes up over the mountains and brings some warmth with it.  This is a good time to take my water bottle shower.  I just fill up plastic water bottle with water, strip down to my shorts and with some soap start washing up from head to toe.  I’ve been doing this every morning and it makes a world of difference to start off every day fresh and clean. 
Still trying to smile despite the heavy load

                Today I hiked about ten miles with that super overloaded pack, all of it a rather gradual uphill climb  though Evolution Valley from 8,000 feet  to the 10,966 feet Sapphire Lake. I found a fantastic secluded camp site on the south end of Sapphire Lake although I had to hike about a couple of hundered feet or so below the trail to get there.  The wind and rain were threatening a bit to so I set up my shelter though nothing developed.  There was lots of water all the way so I didn’t have to carry any and I would just drink from a stream whenever I crossed one.  Quite a few hikers don’t even filter the water, but I still do.  In reality, this is the cleanest purest water that you will find anywhere and there is not much reason to treat or filter it.  I camped and did some fishing in the evening at the lake, but didn’t catch anything.  I saw some small fish but maybe they knew I was too tired.   I was glad to have a big helping of chili for dinner that I just picked up from my resupply in MTR. It was homemade chili that I dehydrated myself a couple of months ago, and it was perfect tonight.   During my hike today I also ate had a bunch of apple chips (dehydrated apples) with hummus and some cous cous with figs. My goal right now is to eat as much as I possibly can to lighten my load a bit.  Two and a half pounds a day, right? – or maybe I can make it three and a half. I took a lots of breaks today and I got a lot of good pictures out of it.
My shelter above Sapphire Lake

Water flowing into Evolution Valley

Evolution Creek


Colby Meadow


North side of Sapphire Lake

Peter Peak and Mt. McGee

Evolution Valley

Sapphire Lake

Sapphire lake

Sapphire Lake

Sunset on Sapphire

Enormous drama in every lanscape

Inlet to Sapphire Lake


Sunrise on Sapphire




               

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